February 17, 2019
Many different colors ice-cream in waffle cones.

Try Lower-Fat Ice Cream (You May Not Notice the Difference)

by Wellness Letter  

Don’t assume that lower-fat ice cream doesn’t taste as good as higher-fat ice cream.

A study in the Journal of Dairy Science pitted vanilla ice creams of varying fat content (6, 8, 10, 12, and 14 percent) against one another in tastings by 292 ice cream enthusiasts. Reducing fat from 14 to 6 percent (and replacing it with maltodextrin, a starch-derived food additive that adds bulk) did not significantly change how much the participants liked the ice cream. In further testing, participants often could not distinguish ice creams with higher or lower fat content.

Of course, some people may still prefer a more natural ice cream that is free of maltodextrin and other additives. Whatever ice cream you choose, don’t overdo it, since even the lowest-fat ice creams can have about 150 to 250 calories per cup (a typical portion size), and most ice creams are high in sugar.

This article first appeared in the UC Berkeley Wellness Letter.